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Top Infectious Disease News of the Week—January 28, 2018


#5: Schools Close in Response to Most Severe Flu Season Since 2009

In an update on the widespread flu activity impacting much of the United States, officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that the country is experiencing its most severe flu season since the 2009 influenza A (H1N1) pandemic.

Week 3 ending on January 20, 2018, was the third week in a row with 49 states reporting widespread flu activity. In addition, New York City, Puerto Rico, and 39 states reported high activity levels of influenza-like illness during week 3, an increase of 7 states from the total reported in the previous week’s FluView report. Furthermore, the proportion of outpatient visits for ILI rose from 6.3% the previous week to 6.6%.

Read the rest of this week’s Flu Update, here.

#4: CDC Director Brenda Fitzgerald Resigns

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s director Brenda Fitzgerald, MD, has resigned from her position amid reports that she purchased shares in a tobacco company while championing governmental efforts dedicated to anti-smoking.

“Dr. Fitzgerald owns certain complex financial interests that have imposed a broad recusal limiting her ability to complete all of her duties as the CDC Director,” a statement issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reads.

Dr. Fitzgerald informed newly-appointed Secretary, Alex Azar “of both the status of the financial interests and the scope of her recusal,” according to the statement.

Read more of this Breaking News story here.

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